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Liu 1

Huazhang Liu (Arthur)

March 23rd, 2015
The end, the goal, the aspiration is to say something, and the something you want to say
will be the measure of whether you have written a sentence that is note only coherent but
good (Fish 36).
Finally, we reach at this chapter and Stanley Fish start to talk about how to write a
GOOD sentence. I believe this quote illustrates the key point of this chapter, or even the
whole book that Stanley Fish wants to talk about. In this chapter, Stanley Fish overthrows his
argument in chapter three and advocates that the goal to write a sentence is much more
important than the structure of the sentences. Since he overthrows his ideas, I open my INQ
NOTE 5, 6, 7 about the previous three chapters of How to Write a Sentence and to remind
myself what is my statement about his argument in each chapter. I think his idea and logic to
teach readers how to write a sentence is reasonable even though he contradicts himself in
chapter four. In order to teach people how to write a good sentence, people need to know the
significance of the sentences, which is relevant with the idea in chapter one. Then, people
start to know how to write a sentence; how to expand the word to the sentences, and what
sentences structure they need to write. In this case, after introducing all these staff, he
introduces the method to write good sentences --- to find the goal when you write a sentence.
If I were the author, I probably would use the same sequence to introduce how to write a
good sentence. My reason is that in order to learn a language better, or master a language,
people have to use the combining method of memorizing and learning strategy. However,
memorizing will be the first work that students need to do because if they do not recognize
anything, how could they use any learning strategies.
In this way, after Fish introduces some structures, he tells us that our writing goal is
much important. In order to write a good sentence, we have to consider what we want to say,
what we want to express, what purpose do we have and what our perspective is. Perspective
is also important because in different angle people will have different opinions and different
argument. Different perspective would make some totally opposite statement. In this case,
when we write a sentence, we have to consider our writing goals and our writing perspective.
If we dont decide our goals and perspective, it is easy for us to digress the topic that we want
to talk about or we have to talk about.
The key ideas of Stanley Fish in this novel reminds me my writing experience in my high
school. In grade 9, once I finished my first draft of my literature class essay and had a
conference with my literature teacher. He said there were some useless and repeated
sentences in my essay, which annoyed the readers. In this way, he told me that I needed to
consider my aim when I wrote a sentence. Since I did not think about the aim or the purpose
that I want to express but I just express what I wanted to narrate in the paragraph, the useless
and repeated sentences occurs even though they have some good structures. Therefore, after
the conference, whenever I finished the draft of my essays, I will reread and try to think about
the meaning of this sentence is useful or not, and what is my purpose to write them. In this
case, I gradually avoid some useless sentences.
Therefore, I totally agree with Fishs ideas about a good sentence, I am curious about are
there any different definition about good sentences?
Besides, how to find the appropriate words when you write a sentence or when you want
to express your ideas?